Online retailer Temu is suing competitor Shein

Temu has filed a lawsuit against its competitor Shein.  (Image: Ascannio - adobe.stock.com)

Temu has filed a lawsuit against its competitor Shein. (Image: Ascannio – adobe.stock.com)

Shops with bargain prices have been more popular than ever for years, even though they have been criticized several times.

Now one of these shops, Temu, is taking action against its competitor and suing Shein. The accusation seems hair-raising.

“Mafia-like intimidation”

Last Wednesday, PDD Holdings, the parent company behind Temu, filed a lawsuit in a court in the US District of Columbia, as reported by several media outlets (including Reuters, Bloomberg and NY Times).

Temu claims that Shein has used increasingly aggressive strategies to “illegally interfere with Temu’s business.”

This included intimidating merchants who offer their products on both platforms. Shein probably cited copyright infringement as the reason.

You can read about the perfidious tricks online shops use to manipulate us in this article:

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The text of the lawsuit reads as follows:

Shein has recently gone so far as to falsely imprison merchants who do business with Temu, including trapping merchants’ representatives in Shein’s offices for hours while Shein confiscates merchants’ electronic devices, looking into the sellers’ accounts which provides traders with access to proprietary Temu information and threatens traders with penalties for their dealings with Temu.

The entire indictment can be viewed online.

The two companies have butted heads in the past. According to Bloomberg, Temu previously accused Shein of harassing suppliers. Turning around, Shein accused Temu of instructing influencers (also Bloomberg).

The lawsuit also provides a rare glimpse into Temu’s business practices. For example, the ad states that more than 100,000 images are uploaded to Temu.com every day and an average of 170 copyright removal requests are received daily – 63 percent of which come from Shein.

Such clothing factories in Southeast Asia produce mass quantities of products.  (Image: HongKi - stock.adobe.com)






Such clothing factories in Southeast Asia produce mass quantities of products. (Image: HongKi – stock.adobe.com)

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Shein tries to restart

Apparently, Shein planned to gain a foothold in the US through a rebrand in 2024, according to The Verge. Controversies have swirled around the company for years regarding its labor practices, supply chains and the sale of copies by small businesses.

In 2022, Shein announced it would spend $15 million to improve standards at factories after revelations that workers were being illegally subjected to long hours and deprived of wages.

We have examined whether shops like Temu are trustworthy in this information article:

We tested for you what 7-euro AirPods from Temu really mean.

The cheap online shop retailer Temu from China is suing its competitor Shein. The prosecution speaks of “mafia-like intimidation” and discloses details. Do you think such behavior is normal among competitors? Have you already ordered from Temu, Shein or another retailer? Feel free to share your thoughts with us in the comments.

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